Tag Archives: Jesus’ baptism

Jesus Joins the Mess

Sorry, but I can’t guarantee the regularity, or even appearance at all, of these posts at the moment, but they will appear when and if possible.  Thanks for bearing with me.

They were searching, searching for something to do with their sin, the things they had got wrong.  They knew that they weren’t perfect, their failure to live up to God’s standards troubled them.  The bloody mess of sacrificed animals wasn’t cutting it for them.  They needed forgiveness, they needed to know they were forgiven, feel refreshed and able to start again with a clean sheet.

And then came John, promising that if they turned back to God, they would be forgiven; and by baptism washed, cleansed and restored.

And the people came.  And responded.

Mark 1:4-11 (CEV)

So John the Baptist showed up in the desert and told everyone, “Turn back to God and be baptized! Then your sins will be forgiven.”

From all Judea and Jerusalem crowds of people went to John. They told how sorry they were for their sins, and he baptized them in the Jordan River.

John wore clothes made of camel’s hair. He had a leather strap around his waist and ate grasshoppers and wild honey.

John also told the people, “Someone more powerful is going to come. And I am not good enough even to stoop down and untie his sandals. I baptize you with water, but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit!”

But John was only the beginning, the pointer.  There was more to come, so much more.

And the One That Was to Come stepped forward, came for John’s blessing, came as every other human being can.

He stepped into the messy water of humanities wrongs, and brought his presence and power.  All are washed clean by his presence in the mess.  He is here, God’s son, the one whom God delights in, with us.

The Baptism of Jesus

About that time Jesus came from Nazareth in Galilee, and John baptized him in the Jordan River. 10 As soon as Jesus came out of the water, he saw the sky open and the Holy Spirit coming down to him like a dove. 11 A voice from heaven said, “You are my own dear Son, and I am pleased with you.”

Christ stands where we stand.  He has no need to.  He has not done the things wrong that I have, yet he stands with me.  As he stands with me, he allows me to stand with him – in the place of forgiveness, healing, strength and a clean start.

Will I let him stand with me?

Will I accept his invitation to stand with him?

Lord,
I come,
with all that I bear.

Thank you for joining me in my mess,
for meeting me in the river,
the place of cleansing,
restoring,
forgiveness.

As I meet you here,
may I let you work in me.

I come,
not spotless and blameless
like you;
but marred,
broken,
thirsting.

Wash me,
cleanse me,
restore me I pray.
May I seek,
and find
your forgiveness
and your life in me.

Objection

The Baptism of Jesus

13 Jesus left Galilee and went to the Jordan River to be baptized by John. 14 But John kept objecting and said, “I ought to be baptized by you. Why have you come to me?”

15 Jesus answered, “For now this is how it should be, because we must do all that God wants us to do.” Then John agreed.

16 So Jesus was baptized. And as soon as he came out of the water, the sky opened, and he saw the Spirit of God coming down on him like a dove. 17 Then a voice from heaven said, “This is my own dear Son, and I am pleased with him.”

What are you doing here? Why have you come to me Jesus?

What can I do for you?

You are the one – I should be coming to you. I am nothing but a signpost to you – you are everything.

You want me to baptize you?  When you are the one?  You have done nothing that needs repenting of.

But if that is what you need me to do, let’s do it.  God knows what is right.

And then it became clear.  This was the opening, the start, the beginning of something new.  God is here in you.

With a voice for all to hear – you are his son, here to do his work.  God is good.

In Case You Were Wondering…

The government is very keen to keep telling us,

We’re all in this together

as if to convince us that they know and feel the pain of the ordinary man and woman, when many suspect that they actually haven’t got a clue, cushioned as they are from “real life”.

I guess there are those who think the same of God – that he has no clue what it is like to actually have to try to live in this world…

So, John the Baptist is emphatic that he isn’t the Messiah.  The people who flocked to him must have been wondering, who then was.

Jesus came as one of them, and queued up alongside them to be baptized.  How that encapsulates all there is about Jesus.  He came as the ordinary man or woman in the queue, one of us – and yet so much more…

Luke 3:21-22

The Baptism of Jesus

21 While everyone else was being baptized, Jesus himself was baptized. Then as he prayed, the sky opened up, 22 and the Holy Spirit came down upon him in the form of a dove. A voice from heaven said, “You are my own dear Son, and I am pleased with you.”

The truth was out.  Yes Jesus was living as a human being, but he is God’s son.

That is, for me, what makes it all so awesome.  God fully understands what it is to be a human being, to live our life with all the stresses, strains and trials that entails.  But he is also God.  God knows our life, he’s lived it.  Jesus lived life on earth in the way God had always intended it to be.  The reactions and teachings we see in Jesus are what God has always been trying to tell his people – in Jesus he came and lived them so we could see.

Thank you God

that you came to earth

in the person of Jesus,

that he lived a human life,

yet lived it your way,

so we could see it.

May I learn from all he showed us,

and live my life

your ways